Quote Originally Posted by Ian Grant View Post
The pinch of sulphite first does help the metol to dissolve, but then with a commercially packaged developer like D76 everything is already mixed together before you dissolve them. So it's not essential.

I have not found any difficulty in dissolving 2 grams of Metol in 100 ml water at room temperature. If my explanation of the mixing instructions given in Hardy & Perrin is not the right one, what is? They gave none in that book, but may have in another publication.

Maybe Metol available in the 30's did have a possible oxidized component. Oxidized Metol is a development inhibitor. Sulfite converts it to the sulfonate, which at least is a weaker developing agent. Hydroquinone + sulfite regenerates oxidized Metol, as does an ascorbate. If their method is no longer needed, it still might do some good and no harm. There is no appreciable increase in time required for preparation.